Please select your home edition
Edition
Lancer 40 years

Elliott Match Racing - Plenty of Kiwis in New Caledonia this week

by Brian Haybittle on 4 Nov 2012
Elliott Match Racing Noumea, November 2012 Brian Haybittle©

Not only are there a bunch of juniors attending the New Caledonian Techno Windsurfing Nationals. 100 metres downwind of them is the New Caledonian Match Racing competition. All in lovely Baie de Sante-Marie.

It has been a feast of exciting sailing to watch. From the Pergola of the Beach Bar you can view the technical prestarts of Elliot 6s match racing to our left and to our right the speed of Bic Techno windsurfers fleet racing.

There are 7 New Caledonian teams, one Aussie team and one Kiwi team from the RNZYS Lion Foundation Youth training program. Captain Chris Steele and his crew of Jay Prestt and Stewie Dodson are being coached and mentored by Roy Dickson from the RNZYS. I won't give away Roy's age but his eyesight is still up to scratch and takes in plenty of detail according to Chris. Roy is certainly enjoying the heat and great weather. Also in attendance from NZ is Jury member John Roundtree.

So far Steele has had a commanding lead in the two round robins. Sunday sees the semi finals and finals. This is a perfect warm up for the NZ match racing nationals next weekend.


Young Techno Sailors, Patrick and Carmen Haybittle, Coral Headey and William Clough caught up with skipper Chris Steele over dinner and asked some questions and asked for some fleet management advise:

Why are you racing in Noumea?
It is a match racing grade 3 regatta. The New Caledonians invited RNZYS to send a team.

How many days long is your regatta?
Tuesday we did a fleet sail from CNC sailing club to Activity Nautique Cente (CAN). Then we had a day training on wednesday and then a four day regatta.

Do French locals know 'starboard' and 'port'?
Yes sailing is raced in english. 

What are you sailing?
Ex RNZYS Lion Youth Program Elliot 6m boats. It generally has three sailors but can race with four.


Races per day?
About 7

Have you beat the Aussies and how many times?
Yes. We won the start and they were very close. Not bad for a 40kgs heavier team.

Who is the competition?
Two teams from Noumea. Girl team are very loud up here. Lots of shouting.

How did you get into this team?
Selected on form at RNZYS.


What is your race day schedule look like?
Wake up at 7:45 am
Visit supermarche for baguettes fromage jambon etc.
8:45am skippers briefing. Race committee tell us about the days management race distances etc.
9am Roy Dickson tells us what will be important on day. Generally don't be greedy, consolidate and play the odds. Focus on basics.
9:20 onto boats rig and get out and run through prestart checks,
favored side, time start lines and lay lines and transits.
1st signal 10am on the dot. Into racing.

After each race debrief on boat. 

After races and packed up Roy goes through his extensive notes. Roy talks about positives and works on. He has a real eye for setup. Upwind and downwind trim. Also wind patterns a really calm manner and a real gentleman. Takes it very professionally.

After debrief done we have a shower and downtime for an hour then dinner.

What are your goals?
In the short term attend the NZ match racing nationals at the RNZYS. I want to take the lessons learnt here and apply there. Medium term be involved with Youth Americas Cup.

What have you enjoyed about Noumea?
Weather, heat, food great and the French atmosphere. 


Anyone you would like to thank?
Thanks Guy Pilkington and Sara tucker of the Lion Foundation Youth training program. And RNZYS. Also my 36 Below team sponsors for there help this year.

Any advise for us Bic Techno windsurfer sailors ?
Get a great start and stay in front from the start. Keep racing close. Don't tack so much as windsurfers lose lots of boat lengths in a tack. It is better to soak down and find a clear lane of wind. This way you only lose maybe 5 boat lengths instead of 20. Have fun.

Thanks Chris and all the best.

As of Saturday afternoon The Kiwi team had won all the round robins and lost one of the semi final races.

Related Articles

Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted today at 5:56 am
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
Pantaenius – Smooth sailing is more than a favourable weather forecast
Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia As Pantaenius get ready to launch into their fourth year operating in Australia, we get to see why they continue to grow their happy crew of customers. Sitting down with Pantaenius Australia’s MD, Jamie MacPhail, you immediately get a sense that the smooth sailing is a direct result of both their unique product and the marketplace’s willingness to embrace the better mousetrap
Posted on 27 Apr
100 days to Rio, are there potholes and bumps ahead?
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for most crews.
Posted on 26 Apr
Is George Lucas a sailor?
He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic He’s very famous for a lot of things, and justifiably so. One of them is Industrial Light and Magic, which has been instrumental in the making of many of the special effects that have made the digital world so impressive. Gone are the smears of Vaseline along the bottom edge of the clear filter to hide the trolley that was actually transporting Luke Skywalker’s Speeder, for instance.
Posted on 25 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Thou doth protest too much, me thinks
And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen And no, we’re not off to analyse Hamlet right away. There’ll be no surtitles popping up on the top of your screen about now. At any rate, it is simply an adaptation of Lady Gertrude’s original line. We merely seek to use it as a way to demonstrate that when there is a lot of brouhaha going on, the smoke screen ultimately ends up as a lovely, colourful flag as to the real intent behind it.
Posted on 18 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Can World Sailing learn from dear old Oz?
Why just lay the drop sheets out and tape up the edges of the windows for a splash of paint Some time ago now, Sail-World proposed that ISAF had a really good opportunity at hand when it morphed into World Sailing (WS). Why just lay the drop sheets out and tape up the edges of the windows for a splash of paint, when you could bring out the jackhammers and do a proper reno??? A call was issued for 200,000 sets of goggles and earmuffs to be supplied and for the real work to be commenced.
Posted on 11 Apr
Henri Lloyd 50 YearsSouthern Spars - 100Naiad/Oracle Supplier